Lawyer to Financial Analyst with CFA Level 1
As my name states, I am a miserable JD. Top-ten law grad on a one-year deferral from big law, with the increasing likelihood of a prolonged job search floating on the horizon (i.e., Unnamed Firm to Miserable JD: Drop Dead). I'm looking to escape this ignominious fate; I want to change sectors.
So does passing the CFA Level 1 give me a legitimate shot to get a financial analyst position (I want to avoid paying for a top 10 MBA)? A job with a small fund or bank would be sweet. And don't get me wrong, I'm not looking to waltz into Barclays or Goldman.
Oh all-knowing masters of the universe, help this poor, floundering scrivener!
Feel free to insult my intelligence for getting such a worthless degree. Your ridicule is well deserved.
Will the CFA Level 1 Help Me Get a Job?
Some users shared that a JD paired with the CFA Level 1 certification should be helpful in getting a job in finance. The CFA Level 1 helps to establish an interest in the profession and show how serious you are about changing careers. Users advise that you keep going through the CFA program and get all three levels.
CFA + JD = Restructuring/Bankruptcy or Distressed Analyst. Now the JD by itself won't get you anywhere in Finance without experience. Passing the level I shows employers you are genuinely interested in Finance, but the question comes down to, why all of a sudden the change of heart? So your best bet would be looking for something that complements both the CFA and JD, which, IMO is a career in Distressed Assets. Also, if you are not interested in being pig holed, you could always be a lawyer for something in Finance, but my knowledge there would stop at "something." But make sure you do all three levels and stay dedicated to the CFA, because it holds no value without the charter, though the level I by itself can help you unlock some doors.
To the OP: I think if you passed level I of the CFA it would be favorable and give the impression that you're serious about switching careers.
However, a few users shared a suggestion that the OP stay in law.
If you have a JD and pass the bar you basically have your own little business. Man, I could make so much money on my own if I was barred. I read an article about people who decide to stop paying their mortgage right. Well they pay a lawyer like 1K and he files a shit load of paperwork and basically drags the process out for around 2 years. Gives the owners (deadbeats a free year or two, rent free). You could clean up.
Stop thinking I can't get a job and realize you have something with a high barrier to entry and a skill which people will pay for. Shit, stand outside court and defend people for 50 bucks.
To the original poster: I honestly don't think you are doing yourself a favor. I mean thinking about it from the perspective of an employer...you spend all this money and time on law school only to figure out that finance is your passion. It doesn't make you look intelligent. No offense, but if I was an employer, that is EXACLTY what I would be thinking.
I think the smartest thing for you to do is to stick with law. you will make more as an associate in big law than as an analyst at a bb ibank. and you already have a job, you're just deferred. You realize all this, right?
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